By Brenda Norrell,
Posted on Mon Dec 31st, 2007 at 10:40:00 AM EST
The most censored issue of Indigenous Peoples by the media in 2007 was the “Silencing of traditional and grassroots’ voices by those in power,” according to readers voting on a poll at the Censored Blog.
The elected tribal councils in the United States and band councils in Canada attempted to silence Indian spiritual leaders and traditional people by way of silencing and distorting the news in 2007. Elected tribal leaders also threatened and oppressed Indians speaking out in their own communities. Tailgating by tribal police, threats of harm and threats of membership removal increased for Indian activists, according to reports from across North America.
“Nuclear, uranium and coal genocide on Indigenous lands,” was the second most censored issue. Throughout the Americas, Indigenous lands and people are targeted by coal, uranium, copper and gold mining and toxic dumping that will poison their air, water and land.
Navajos are fighting the new proposed power plant, Desert Rock, in New Mexico. While the power plants on the Navajo Nation continue to send electricity to non-Indian communities, many Navajos do not have electricity and their children must study by dim lantern light at night. Still, Navajos live with the pollution and sickness of unreclaimed uranium mines, power plants, coal mining and hundreds of oil and gas wells in the Four Corners area alone. The 88-member Navajo Nation Council, which enters into energy leases, relies on the revenues of polluting development to pay their salaries and travel expenses. While Navajos in local communities fight the power plants and mining, they battle the Navajo government and the Navajo president’s highly-paid press officer.
The Algonquin, Pueblos, Navajo, Lakota and others are also battling new uranium mining, while Goshute and Western Shoshone fight nuclear dumping on their lands which will be detrimental to future generations.
Yaqui in Sonora are opposing the use of pesticides in agricultural fields which are banned in the United States, but are still produced in the US and exported to other countries. These pesticides are causing deaths and “jelly babies,” Yaqui babies born without bones. O’odham are fighting a proposed waste dump in Sonora in their ceremonial community of Quitovac. Indigenous Peoples from Guatemala and Peru, now fighting copper, gold and coal mining in their communities, met with Navajos, Acoma Pueblo, Western Shoshone and others to create solidarity in action in 2007. As efforts intensified in the Americas, nuclear and mining corporations began targeting more communities in Africa.
“Where are the warriors?” asked Janice Gardipe, Paiute-Shoshone, during the Alcatraz Sunrise Gathering in November, urging a new wave of resistance to Yucca Mountain nuclear dumping and the gold mining that is now coring out the mountains and poisoning the water on Western Shoshone lands.
Continue with the story at NarcoSphere.